When Should I Start Praying If I See Brown and Yellow Discharge during My Purity?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad


I know you should not pray until you are convinced that your period has ended. This can be tested by checking for the signs of purity like clear or white discharge or total dryness. I usually have clear or white discharge daily, but due to my heavy menses, the discharge would stain brown or yellow for a long time. I waited 15 days in hopes that it would clear up.

However, whenever I wait for total whiteness, my next period starts three days later. What is the proper ruling regarding this topic? How long should one wait before praying again if this problem is consistent?


Thank you for your question. May Allah reward you for asking for clarification and seeking Allah’s pleasure in your worship.

Clear or White

You are correct that one should wait until all traces of color are gone to pray. This usually happens within 15 days for most women, but exceptions exist. I can only give you a complete answer if you write back to us with details like this:

Day 1-day 5: black
Day 6-day 10: red
Day 11-14: brown
Day 15-20: yellow

For example, in the above case, a woman would consider the yellow as istihadha’ (abnormal vaginal discharge) and pray during it. In practical life, she would take a ghusl (ritual bath) on the 15th day, start praying and make up the prayers of one day of yellow that she had before the 15th day. This is because yellow was her weakest color, and she will consider all of it istihadha’ to have a valid period. The following month, as soon as the yellow starts, she will know that it is istihadha’, and she will take her ghusl and pray like a woman in istihadha’. After the yellow is over, there is no need for a ghusl.

Please see how she would pray in istihadha’ here:
How Does One Purify Themselves When Suffering From Chronic Penile Leakage (Shafi’i)?
How Do I Maintain My Wudu With Vaginal Discharge?

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqida, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.